Thursday, September 12, 2013

Cemetery Poetry

Isn't the internet a wonderful thing ...sometimes?

The volunteers are struggling trying to  read the old tombstones at Centerville Cemetery.   On Theodore Ludington's stone, who died October 6, 1887 at age 64 y 13 days, Irene Black had written in her cemetery book  that the inscription said (in 1970's) :

"Leaves have their...to fath...
And stars to set but all...
Thou has all seasons for thine ...
We kings...
When summer...
When autumn... shall forget us golden grain
But who shall teach us when to look for thee."

Well it certainly hadn't gotten any easier to read 40+ years later....so on a whim, I typed the first four lines into the search engine....and up popped a complete poem by Felicia Hemans, an English poet (1793-1835), titled "The Hour of Death."  So if this is your ancestor, he must have been highly educated and liked poetry.  (and if you have the Black Cemetery book you can make the correction  on page 96.)

  LEAVES have their time to fall,
And flowers to wither at the north wind’s breath,
  And stars to set; but all,
Thou hast all seasons for thine own, O Death!


We know when moons shall wane,
When summer birds from far shall cross the sea,
 When Autumn’s hue shall tinge the golden grain;
But who shall teach us when to look for thee?